China’s pork prod­ucts head­ing to Rus­sia

China Daily (Canada) - - BUSINESS - By ZHONG­NAN andMUCHEN

Chi­nese pork prod­ucts will re­place banned pork ex­ports from the West, which are un­likely to win back their place in the Rus­sian mar­ket even if the present ban is lifted, ac­cord­ing to Rus­sia’s meat prod­ucts watch­dog.

Rus­sia’s Fed­eral Ser­vice for Ve­teri­nary and Phy­tosan­i­tary Sur­veil­lance said in a state­ment on the agency’s web­site on Wed­nes­day that “the Rus­sian gov­ern­ment now is ac­tively co­op­er­at­ing with China’s ve­teri­nary au­thor­i­ties on pork sup­plies from cer­tain highly in­te­grated Chi­nese en­ter­prises”.

Rus­sia’sFar East re­gion used to re­ly­heav­i­ly­on­meat­sup­plies from the United States and Canada. The change in meat sup­pli­ers comes af­ter Moscow im­posed a one-year ban on a num­ber of agri­cul­tural prod­ucts, in­clud­ing­meat, fish, poul­try, fruit, veg­eta­bles, wine and dairy prod­ucts from the US, the mem­ber na­tions of the Euro­pean Union, Nor­way, Canada and Aus­tralia as re­tal­i­a­tion for their economic sanc­tions.

Tian Zhi­hong, a pro­fes­sor spe­cial­iz­ing in the in­ter­na­tional trade of agri­cul­tural prod­ucts atChina Agri­cul­tural Univer­sity in Bei­jing, said even though Rus­sia’s move is still at an early stage, it will have pro­found po­lit­i­cal and economic im­pli­ca­tions be­cause it comes at a crit­i­cal time when the US and its Euro­pean al­lies are try­ing to squeeze the coun­try’s trade space in the world mar­ket.

To gain more ac­cess to other mar­kets, Rus­sia also is al­low­ing value ofRus­sia’s pork im­ports

in 2013 im­ports from neigh­bor­ing Be­larus and Kaza­khstan of food pro­cessed from Western raw­ma­te­ri­als asMoscow seeks to curb do­mes­tic food price in­creases trig­gered by its ban on food im­ported from the West.

“Be­cause Rus­sia can gain pork­sup­plies­fro­moth­er­mem­ber states of the Com­mon­wealth of In­de­pen­dent States such as Be­larus, Ar­me­nia and Moldova to sup­port the de­mand in its western part, China’s ris­ing pork ex­ports to Rus­sia will be pro­cessed and con­sumed in the coun­try’s east­ern part,” Tian said .

Tian said com­pa­nies from China’s Sichuan and He­nan prov­inces and north­east­ern re­gion are likely to be se­lected to ex­port pork to Rus­sia, be­cause th­ese re­gions have de­vel­oped pig-rais­ing and pork-pro­cess­ing in­dus­tries.

Rus­sia im­ported 619,200 met­ric tons of pork val­ued at $2.13 bil­lion in 2013, with Den­mark, Ger­many, Canada and Brazil as its main sup­pli­ers, ac­cord­ing to data from Rus­sia’s Fed­eral Cus­toms Ser­vice. The coun­try pur­chased 79,300 met­ric tons of Cana­dian pork for $246.3 mil­lion and re­ceived $19 mil­lion worth of pork from the US last year.

Mean­while, Rus­sia also im­ported 658,400 met­ric tons of cooled and frozen meat, val­ued at $2.87 bil­lion, with Be­larus and Brazil among the top ex­porters.

Li Guox­i­ang, deputy direc­tor of the Ru­ral Devel­op­ment In­sti­tute at theChi­nese Academy of So­cial Sciences, said as China is the world’s big­gest pork pro­ducer, the na­tion has a well-de­vel­oped pork pro­cess­ing in­dus­try. It has also im­ple­mented strict qual­ity con­trol on its pork ex­ports.

Sup­ported by a boom­ing feed in­dus­try and surg­ing do­mes­tic meat de­mand, China ex­ported 1.68 mil­lion pigs and 73,000 met­ric tons of frozen pork in 2013. “Rus­sia is no longer only im­port­ing China’s veg­eta­bles and fruit but it is highly likely to pur­chase more Chi­nese meat and farm prod­ucts to en­sure sup­ply and sta­bi­lize do­mes­tic goods price while diplo­matic re­la­tions between Rus­sia and the West are still un­clear,” said Li. Con­tact the writ­ers at zhong­nan@chi­nadaily.com.cn and muchen@chi­nadaily.com.cn

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